Saturday, June 28, 2014

What summer looks like at My house

Last night I stood outside while waiting for Emma to go potty and I noticed beautiful blinking lights. Fireflies a.k.a. lightning bugs in my neck of the woods. Lightning bugs make me smile. 

I sat and listened to my kids play in the swimming pool. Splashing and screams of fun were heard all around. There is so much fun to have in a swimming pool.

The sights and sounds of summer . . . screaming children playing tag, keep away, baseball, etc. Exhausted boys at night . . . almost too tired to take their baths before heading to bed. 

Ducks and ducklings waddling up into the yard. Many times they simply hang out and other times they want a bit of love.

Grill out lunch and dinner. Fruits and veges plentiful and delicious! Refreshing ice filled glasses of herb tea, lemonade or simply water.

Staying up late and sleeping in.

Watching movies altogether when the heat of the day sets in.

Evenings outside on the deck, on the patio or by the lake.

Easy going style . . . Summer time!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Houston . . . We May Have a Problem!

Two days ago we released our little feathered friends onto the lake. They had been out with us many times swimming and eating on their own. We had been watching them and smiled each time we saw them swimming along all together.

This evening, Cameron went to put food out for them and they came right up to him. He pet them and then they followed him up into the yard. Cameron came running in to tell us and Katelyn went to check out the "situation". They were no longer out back, so she walked up the hill to the drive . . . and there they were. All eight of them were standing by the garage door waiting to be allowed in.

Of course, our itty hearts were welling up with surprise and I suppose a bit of pride . . . our bitty ducklings had come home all on their own.

They have all grown so much! "Ahem" Little Gwen was happy to have them back . . . she is the one laying down toward the left center.

They are SO Happy and were chatting among themselves. 

Tonight our babes are safe and sound asleep in an air conditioned garage. We are thrilled they love us so much!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Life has been Spinning . . .

Lately my life has been spinning . . . every ten seconds or so SOMEONE needs me for something, there are changes happening all around me at work and at home and several our sweet furries/feathered friends have died. To say sometimes I am too exhausted mentally and emotionally to even think, is an understatement.

I am thankful, oh so thankful for Christian speakers, writers and encouragers! (I know, encouragers isn't quite a word, just go with it.) Yesterday I began reading a book by Priscilla Shirer called "Life Interrupted: Navigating the Unexpected". I truly believe God placed this book in my hands to "Navigate" my spinning life.

Troubles "Interruptions" in our lives come in all shapes, sizes and degrees. If you are like I am, when trouble/interruptions come our way and change our "nice and tidy lives" "we try to understand why God would be causing or allowing this interruption to happen to us right now, when the only thing it's doing is making us feel frustrated and put out. It's the last thing we want or seem to need. And yet God has let it happen anyway.

Then we wonder, "What will happen next?" We begin to worry and fret . . . 

Priscilla writes: "Knowing what we know about God, we do our best to accept the fact that we wouldn't be having to put up with this stuff right now if He didn't want us to, if He wasn't allowing it to happen for some reason. But that doesn't always make it a whole lot easier to handle."

"I want my life to radiate what happens when God has a person's heart at His full control, when every event or circumstance is simply another avenue to know Him better and show forth His glory."

"This interruption - whatever it is, no matter how big or small - represents your next best chance to see Him take center stage, to show you what He can do when the unexpected only makes you more expectant than ever."

"What if we knew this interrupted life was less about the problem and more about the process? What if we knew this roadblock or aggravation hadn't caught God by surprise even if it's come as a shock to us? What if we knew that the direction He was taking us provided opportunities we'd always dreamed about, even if they didn't look exactly the way we thought they would? What if we knew, by not getting what we want, God was ultimately giving us something better?

"I think we can know -- and live like we know." 

Priscilla's writings couldn't have come at a better time in my life. With everything swirling around me, God knows BEFORE things happen . . .

  • before the changes at work
  • before the deaths of ducklings
  • before the deaths of guinea pigs
  • before the disappointment
  • before the battles
  • before the . . .
Isaiah 64:4
For since the world began, no ear has heard, and no eye has seen a God like you, who works for those who wait for him!

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Picture Post

I have been really bad at posting lately, but there are days I simply have zero to write about.

Tonight - a picture post.

a little seating area on our deck

I LOVE Color!

The "cooking" and eating area of the deck.

Red is amazing . . .

Our relaxing area.

Katelyn and Yellow Feet.

Cody practicing his golf swing.

Fishing is Fun . . . just ask Cameron.

Cody has become quite the fisherman.

Ryan caught a BIG one.

Ryan with Gwen - a few weeks ago.
Beckett is peeking out from under a chair.

 Katelyn made Pineapple Upside Down cake.
We are S.P.O.I.L.E.D!

  The ducklings and ducks are enjoying a swim in the lake while the boys keep watch.
 The ducks are great at keeping NASTY bugs out of the gardens.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Summer at Our House and HomeSchool Curriculum

Our days have certainly taken on a "summer" routine. The pace is slow and easy . . . we are definitely taking advantage of it.

This morning I have stayed upstairs in our Master bedroom with three of the boys and two furry babes. This morning the boys are using their ipad "time" to make sure emails are in contacts so they can communicate with one another and other family. They have a limited time in which to do "their thing" before the ipad shuts them out. I don't have to log them in through a passcode, I simply set the quiet hours of 10:00 p.m. to 10:00 a.m., insert their time allotment, text address so I can receive text messages if the boys try to "go around" the program and let them enjoy.

I am beginning to plan for our next year of homeschool. I am excited to begin a new curriculum for each of them. Veritas Press offers an amazing curriculum that is customizable for each child. My boys have review some of the curriculum and watched the online session examples and are very excited about the beginning of the next year.

Here is an example:

Veritas Press

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Summer Vacation

I've lost track of what day of summer vacation we are on . . . the days seem to be running together for us. Today I even overhead the boys trying to decide which day it actually was. It made me smile.

We have not made a summer bucket list . . . we probably should set some kind of goal of things to accomplish. 

So far this summer we have:

  • slept in 
  • swam in the pool (at least the boys have)
  • gone fishing - several times
  • made ice cream - several times
  • watched a movie or two
I have also had the boys doing a few papers each day to keep up with penmanship, reasoning and a little math. It takes them all of fifteen minutes each day.

We have not:
  • gone to a movie - but I do have planned one for this week
  • had a picnic
  • had water balloon fights games
  • gone on a little day trip
  • gone geo caching
  • played with silly string
  • gone out to eat and actually eat IN a restaurant
  • read a book aloud all the way through
  • cowboy camped (for the boys and daddy)
  • gone to the zoo - not sure the boys are even interested in this one
  • ran around silly while taking pictures
I am sure if we all sat down and discussed a bucket list the boys would have plenty to add!

What are you doing this summer?

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Sounds of Summer, Porches to Backyards

Summer . . . I know it isn't "officially" here . . . but it is close.

I love the sounds of "Summer" . . .

  • crickets 
  • birds chirping
  • kids playing outside
  • screams of delight (yes even from boys)
  • splashes from the swimming pool
  • water from the hose
  • chit chat between boys
  • lawn mowers
  • trimmers and edgers
  • ducklings peeping
  • games of hide and seek as the sun fades away
  • impromptu baseball games in the back yard
I love that the boys can run and play until I can barely see them running through the yard with sweet friends. 

I love chatting with our NEW neighbors that I have known for years. We are so excited they moved in and they have kiddos in age that match mine pretty closely. Our boys are thrilled to have new friends to play with. Randy, Katelyn and I have also gained some lil' buddies and we love it. 

As Randy and I enjoyed the evening outside I sat and watched for the blink blink of a lightning bug. I didn't see any and wonder where they have all gone. When I was little (ages ago) we loved catching them . . . of course, like most other kids back in ancient times, we would pull the light part off their bodies and wear them as rings. Pretty shocking confession isn't it?

Tonight I smile as I think of 1950 Front Porches . . . Neighbors would sit out and enjoy their friends and neighbors. Chatting about the day and encouraging one another while watching the kids run and play. I have mentioned a time or two before that I wish those gentler times would return. Well, FRONT porches may not work for our neighbors, but I am thrilled that we can enjoy socializing with our neighbors in our backyard. Decks off the back of houses, backyard patios and sitting areas. Families slowing down a little to enjoy life . . . its the little things.

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Our Lives Uncripted is written by me. All pictures are personal and cannot be copied. No portion of this blog can be copied and/or sold. All content copyright JCP, All Rights Reserved!

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